Praise the Lord! The Southern Baptist Convention is likely to elect a black President this summer.
This is the 18th time I am able to proudly say that the beautiful lady standing beside me is my Valentine. In the summer of 1994 I was home from graduate school, visiting my parents in southern Illinois. After a week of vacation, I said goodbye to my parents and pulled out of the driveway in my little blue Honda CRX for the lonely twelve hour drive back to Fort Worth, Texas. As I drove away my prayer warrior mother cried out in her heart, “Lord, it’s time!” You might be thinking, time for what? Time for her son to meet “the one.” In a matter of weeks her prayers (plural because she had been praying for my future wife for several years) were answered.
Here’s how it happened. The last weekend of August I got a call from a buddy of mine who wanted me to go with him to a singles fellowship that evening at Southwayside Baptist Church. I didn’t really want to go. But Tim was persistent, saying, “Oh, come on man, who knows…you might even meet your future wife there tonight!” Who could walk away from an offer like that! I truly didn’t expect that to happen.
Young man, I urge you, “flee sexual immorality” ( 1 Cor. 6:18) if you love life. “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience” (Eph. 5:6). Flee the occasions of it, – the company of those who draw you into it, – the places where you might be tempted to it. Read what our Lord said about it in Matthew 5:28. Be like holy Job: “Make a covenant with your eyes” (Job 31:1). Flee talking of it. It is one of the things ought not so much as to be named. You cannot handle tar and not be defiled. Flee the thoughts of it: resist them, mortify them, pray against them, – make any sacrifice rather than give way. Imagination is the hotbed where this sin is too often hatched. Guard your thoughts, and there is little fear about your deeds.
- J. C. Ryle, Thoughts for Young Men, pp. 30-31.
Being the host network for this year’s Super Bowl afforded NBC the opportunity to showcase the talent of their various shows. They did it in the imitation of a Broadway musical, starting off with the cast of 30 Rock and shifting to the casts of the Office, Community, and other NBC offerings, including nightly news anchor Brian Williams.
What really intrigued me was the lyrics to the song…”The Brotherhood of Man.” It clearly was not a celebration of testosterone or the theme for a men’s conference. It clearly was a song about humanity. ‘Brotherhood’ definitely referred to humanity as a whole and ’man’ clearly was used in the generic ‘person’ sense.
So here’s my point…if a liberal, secular television network has no problem using masculine language to refer to men and women in general, as has been the case in English and other languages for millennia, why are some evangelical Christians so convinced it is necessary to switch to gender-inclusive language in some of our English Bible translations?